On Thursday, our last night of our trip, we excitedly retraced our trip through the Sierras, and as you can see, our trip Kewpie was happy to see those gorgeous snow-capped mountains again…
We had dinner in Reno with Maggie’s sister, Katie, who is recovering nicely from a recent hip replacement, and husband Mike fixed us a wonderful Mexican meal. Easy to tell that these two sisters are like peas in a pod and a force to be reckoned with!
Checking the latest Caltrans report on road conditions, we decided that delays on 101 were shorter than on 299, so we drove Friday through the ‘upper’ Central Valley, and connected to 101 close to the Willets bypass.
We got buzzed by a crop duster just outside Colusa – one of those ‘which way did he go? moments’ – where he flew right above us, then flew just outside my passenger window, barely off the water…
But it was worth it, braving the crop duster buzzing, to get gorgeous strawberries, cherries and blueberries from a farmer (who does not dust his crops) – sweetened by that California sunshine and all the rain!
And so, Maggie and I drove up 101 Greeted by the Redwoods, and the cool, misty climate of our dear home, sweet home. My sister, Amy, hosted with friends Quynh, Suzanne, Mimi and Nancy, a wonderful welcome home dinner, as we ended our 42-day journey coming Full Circle, playing our mini-harmonicas from the legendary Shack Up Inn in Clarksdale (to be described in a later blog, faithful reader…).
A sumptuous meal was served, with Nancy’s fancy FloraDora cocktails, and we all traded stories about recent trips, from our Redwoods2Gulf trip, to Nancy’s recent ‘Hamilton’ San Francisco trip, and Suzanne’s Galapagos adventures. (Sorry that my only group photo has Amy’s eyes closed…)
As the map link below shows (Mapquest could only map our trip stops up to Twin Falls), add the additional 200 miles we travelled on Thursday (taking in the Minidoka Internment National Historic Site and Shoshone Falls, before staying in Elko, NV), and then from Elko to home, we will have logged another 650+ miles, making our trip closer to over 7,200 miles! My Ford Escape, aka Esperanza, has served us well!
Obviously, we are about ‘3 weeks behind’ in posting — just too much fun visiting with old friends, enjoying food, music, art, beautiful scenery and walks and hikes, and the time it takes to drive across the country. I admit that by the time I realized that the desktop version of WordPress is more facile than the app, the trip was winding down.
And so now, we have the benefit of higher speed Internet, time to reflect, and the ‘long view’ perspective needed to draw out themes from our trip experiences (shades of my training as a qualitative data geek) and understanding of the people we met, and the context of place, history, and customs. This is to say that the blog will continue, retrospectively, and not necessarily in a temporal fashion (day-by-day), but rather guided by insights and observations.
It’s been a wild and joyful ride, and it’s not over yet!